Frequently Asked Questions

1) Why are you called the “Change Agency?”
We’re in the business of facilitating change within creative companies. We’re consultants by training, and are usually engaged when some major technology, communications or programmatic shift happens (or needs to happen) within an organization. We view change as a positive force of opportunity- but we know not everyone feels this way. We’re often referred to as agents of change- or an agency for change- and we believe that companies and people must feel agency within the change they are facing. We work with clients to empower them as they change along with the world around them.

2) So what does that mean in real terms? Like, in English?
Ok. Sometimes we’re called in to audit, evaluate and discuss a company’s website and online presence- to make sure they’re making good decisions about how they’re representing themselves and following through with their goals. Sometimes we’re called in to help extract a company from the grips of a hostile vendor, to facilitate a super-important board meeting, or to conduct research and analyze a seemingly intractable business problem. Sometimes, candidly, clients don’t even know why they’re calling us in. They just have a gut sense they need an objective third party that’s been through a lot of volatile, high-touch, high-risk situations.Let’s say you need a new website. This is a piece of technology that can cost as much as a fancy house, and is the most visible and singularly important part of your online presence. Most websites these days have powerful back-end database systems that can store and catalogue your company’s financial and contact data. If the system is built right, and your organization knows how to use the thing, good onya. If it’s built poorly- maybe the web developer doesn’t know the ins and outs of your particular industry, or they’re cutting corners- or if your staff doesn’t know how to use the tech, it’s only a matter of time before weird entries pop up and you lose trust in the system. And then, you have to either fix the thing, or replace the thing. Either way, there are *huge* benefits to getting it right the first go around.

3) People pay you for this?
They do. And frankly, we’re not cheap. We’re good at what we do, and we’re in this business to save our clients money, time and aggravation. For some clients, our work has meant they haven’t had to eliminate staff, get another (new) new website, or blow *literally* hundreds of thousands of dollars on terrible ideas that vendors strong-armed them into considering.

4) Is it true that Sydney was in a boy band?
Yup. They were called the “Broken Heart Buffet” and Sydney was the “cute nerdy one.” Think: frosted tips and thick glasses. It was supposed to be ironic, but wound up just really, really, really good. No photo or video documentation survives.

5) Is it true that Jennifer is an expatriate New Jerseyan? Bonus question: did she have big hair?
Yes, while her hair is now appropriately cropped, Jennifer’s hair has seen a fair amount of gel, mousse, spray, teasing, and various other styling products and procedures. She was, in her time, a true Jersey girl – minus airbrushed nails and fake tan.

6) Are you trying to be funny?
Constantly.

7) You both have terminal degrees in choreography. What does that have to do with management consulting?
Our degrees in choreography mean that we are experts in how bodies perform tasks in space and time. Theories of organizational behavior come and go, but at their root, all organizations consist of individuals performing tasks according to certain rules and parameters. Sure, we’re up to date on our Shirky, Lewin, Caluwé and Vermaak, and subscribe to the Harvard Business Review (so that you don’t have to), but ultimately, our consulting practice is grounded in somatic practice. We try to make the choreography of our clients’ business practices a beautiful thing.

8) How can you manage such a wide variety of clients in the not for profit world, government, and academia?
A lot of our work has to do with figuring out ways to get things done within organizations that struggle with calcified management hierarchies or unclear chains of command. Not for profits, government and academia have some pretty hairy bureaucracies, and it happens that that is where we do our best work!

9) You’re both constantly harping on the importance of being a “listening” organization. Who do you listen to?
Foremost we listen to each other and we listen to our clients. By nature of our work, which spans a lot of sectors and specialties, we have a pretty broad reading list that spans organizational behavior nerds (Christensen, Gladwell) to academic critics (Homans, Muñoz) to hundreds of blogs and periodicals (Harvard Business Review, Asymco). In short: we are constantly looking for folks who talk about the challenges of listening- not just in terms of online social networks, but in terms of operational philosophy. We get from Siddhartha to Shirky pretty quickly.

10) In a few sentences, why should anyone hire you?
We move organizations through a process in a matter of hours or days that it would take them months or more to accomplish on their own. We bring a wealth of knowledge and know-how to the table, and have immediate access to a network of highly talented and downright brilliant professionals. We also manage expectations, emotionality, and personalities throughout the process. While this last bit of the equation may seem soft, it is often the most crucial element in getting the job done, and done efficiently.